1. You know what’s kind of funny (and by kind of funny I mean actually pretty sad)?

    The fact that whenever I post something about racism, it ends up getting reblogged like crazy… meanwhile, there are black bloggers I follow on here who say pretty much the same damn thing and it only gets like 10 notes.

    Look, I’m glad I struck a chord with y’all. But  does everything have to be cosigned by a white dude before it catches white Tumblr’s attention?

     
  2. Southern Europeans and Whiteness

    In response to my previous postiamawug said this:

    I agree with you about the N-word and the advantages of institutionalized racism; my main issue was with that simple phrase “we fucked up.”  Assuming the “we” in this sentence is referring to white people, one can only assume from the language you have used that you feel white people today bear some responsibility for dead peoples’ actions.  If I am incorrect, and this was perhaps a typo or mis-thought, cool.  As we can all see, I too am privy to saying stupid stuff, ie. “especially if they don’t have ancestors that were racist/sexist/etc.” because obviously that would be an impossible thing to determine…what I meant to say is more specifically related to my situation; my ancestors are from Faial, Portugal, which is an island in the Azores populated by ranchers and farmers (non-commercial), not slave owners.  My great-grandfather came to America in 1906 and while I have no idea if he was racist/sexist, I do know that he was too focused on herding cows to do anything else.

    Before I say anything else, I do want to commend you for not being a jerk. Your responses have been presented in a way that is honest and polite and I can tell that you really aren’t coming from a place of prejudice and hate. That being said, I think you’re totally wrong.

    First off, did you really mean to say that the Portuguese didn’t have anything to do with the slave trade? Really?

    Second, I completely understand that instinct to want to claim that your Portuguese heritage lets you off the hook. I know how it is. I’m Italian. Our people arrived after the Civil War was over so we’re not culpable for maltreatment of blacks, right?

    Wrong. And here’s why: Portuguese and Italians (and Poles and Greeks and Serbs and Russians and every other immigrant group) haven’t always been “white.” “Whiteness” as a concept is entirely unrelated to ethnicity or genetics. It’s simply a way to divide people into those society deems worthy of full citizenship and the sub-human “Other.”

    When the southern and eastern Europeans first started arriving in huge numbers during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, they were mostly poor, uneducated peasants. They were treated horribly by white Americans and the only opportunities they had were either farming or manual labor in factories, etc. Eventually, the sheer number of these immigrants allowed them to gain enough political clout to buy their way into white society, just as the Irish had done before them. And then, once they were deemed to be “white enough,” what did these ethnic groups do? They actively joined in the oppression of blacks and other non-whites.

    Maybe not your grandfather specifically. Or mine, for that matter. But our families have benefited from that oppression. We enjoy all the benefits of white privilege, despite the fact that we are genetically more similar to Northern Africans than we are to Anglo-Saxons. Peoples from all around the Mediterranean are all part of the same genetic pool, but because of the circumstances surrounding the immigration and assimilation of those various groups, some of us are considered white and some aren’t. It’s one of the best examples of how meaningless the concept of race is.

    (I think it’s somewhat akin to the phenomenon of black people “passing” as white. Our skin is just fair enough and our hair just straight enough that we get to join the club, while our cousins in Turkey and Morocco are left out. I may be completely off-base with that comparison, though. Someone let me know if I am.)

     
  3. 02:42

    Notes: 804

    Reblogged from iamawug

    Tags: racismwhite privilege

    iamawug:

    stfuracists:

    recovering hipster: Ok, so here’s my take on the whole “white people saying the N-word” thing.

    recoveringhipster:

    I understand what you’re saying, white dudebros. I really do. Because, despite all the anti-racism, anti-sexism, social justice-y stuff I do, deep down…

    This is great, except for this:

    That’s white privilege son. Because we’re so used to being able to do whatever we want, this one little restriction really bothers us. But it the grand scheme of things, it’s nothing. It’s literally the least we can do for how severely we fucked things up in the past..”

    I understand that the N-word comes with a lot of social baggage, and I certainly don’t feel that there is any justification for its use.  But, unless I am mistaken, I am 23 years old and have never subjugated ANYONE, black or otherwise, to oppression, discrimination, or slavery.  Saying “we” fucked things up, when we were not even alive to be the ones doing the fucking up, is a little, well, fucked up.  Saying that a white person deserves to bear the sins of all atrocities committed by white people throughout history, doesn’t make any logical sense; especially if they don’t even have any ancestors that were racist/sexist/etc.  That kind of mentality might be helpful with making sure we don’t forget, but it’s quite detrimental to the path of forgiveness.


    I’m not saying that white people today should “bear the sins of all atrocities committed by white people throughout history.” I’m saying that white people shouldn’t say the n-word. Also, white people still have tons of built-in advantages because of institutional racism. To ignore that is just plain silly. And as for people who don’t have any racist, sexist, etc. ancestors? Surely you’re joking…

    (Source: recoveringhipster)

     
  4. Ok, so here’s my take on the whole “white people saying the N-word” thing.

    I understand what you’re saying, white dudebros. I really do. Because, despite all the anti-racism, anti-sexism, social justice-y stuff I do, deep down I’m still one of you. I’m a straight, white, middle-class, cisgender American male who grew up listening to George Carlin records and watching South Park (I even, quelle horreur, flirted with libertarianism for a bit).

    So yeah, being told that we can’t say this one word sucks. And I know you’re totally not racist, but… there’s this really great joke that you want to share and it uses that word, but it’s fine because the point of the joke isn’t to make fun of black folks, it’s actually a biting piece of social commentary that points out the absurdity and ignorance of racism… etc. etc. etc.

    I get it. I understand where you’re coming from. And yes, I agree that absolute freedom of speech is an admirable ideal. I also agree with you that words only have the power we give them. The problem is that over the past 400 or so years, we’ve given that word a whole lot of power. Dudes like us used to say that word all the time. And not just because they were singing along to Watch the Throne or quoting a Sarah Silverman bit.

    Because of dudes like us, that word can hurt people more than pretty much any other word in the English language (sidenote: if you’re wondering about some of those other words- for women, LGBT people, Asians, Jews, and so on- you probably shouldn’t say those either). It’s dehumanizing. It’s mean. It conjures up the ghosts of America’s ugly past and exacerbates problems today. Just don’t say it. End of discussion.

    Oh man, that’s hard to hear, isn’t it? It’s just a word, after all, and now you’re just dying to say it. But before you do, think for a moment about why it is that you’re angry. It’s because someone has told you that there is this one thing you’re not allowed to do because you’re white. It’s almost like there’s this distinction being made between you and everyone else just because of the color of your skin and you’re being treated like a second class citizen. Unfair, bro!

    You’re right, bro. It is unfair. Now, imagine that instead of this being about whether you can say that one little word, we’re debating whether you’re allowed to attend the school you want, or whether you can marry the person you want, or whether you have to right to vote, or whether you’re a “real” person or just a piece of property.

    That’s white privilege son. Because we’re so used to being able to do whatever we want, this one little restriction really bothers us. But it the grand scheme of things, it’s nothing. It’s literally the least we can do for how severely we fucked things up in the past. Even today, marginalized people from all walks of life deal with much worse on a daily basis. So just suck it up and start working to create a truly just society. Maybe someday in the future, our sons and daughters will be able to say that word again. Until then, quit whining and STFU.

    One last thing… Let’s be honest here for a second, do you really think white people aren’t allowed to use the N-word? Honky, please. You know as well as I do that white people say it all the time, with little to no repercussions. What you’re angry about is that now people are starting to call us out on it.